Postnatal depression affects 1 in 5 new mothers and looking after a new baby can be incredibly stressful. Not is it 24/7, 364 days a year but coupled with sleep deprivation, the early months of motherhood can certainly take its toll. Here are some practical everyday tips to get some well-deserved me-time (with baby even) in just a few minutes every day.
Get up and glo! With a baby, often the only ‘me-time’ is taking a shower. A great way to tone up the body and skin is some daily skin-brushing. Using a dry body brush, brush your body vigorously in a direction towards the heart BEFORE you have a shower. This helps break down toxins eg. cellulite and boosts circulation. Moisturise afterwards for an added glow.
It’s amazing how just taking a few deep breaths really can help not only calm you down but re-energise you instantly. Whenever you feel anxious or overwhelmed, take a moment to stop. Find a comfy place to sit and place your hands on your tummy and take a deep breath in, pushing your belly out (it doesn’t look pretty but it works!). Next breathe out, drawing your tummy back in as far as you can. This simple breathing exercise will also strengthen your abdominal and pelvic floor muscles. Do this a few times whenever you feel a bit frazzled and see how you feel! You can also practise this with baby.
Boring as it sounds, instead of fizzy drinks, opt for water or herbal tea instead. Drinking 2 litres a day, will boost your energy levels and help give glow to your sleep-deprived skin. If you are breast-feeding, this will also keep you hydrated. Stash bottles of water around the house at all your feeding stations.
Dose up on Vitamin D
Schedule half-an-hour to go for a walk during the day. Fresh air is great for you and baby and you’ll have more energy to get things done when you get back. Treat this time as ‘you-time’. Play some music or why not go with a friend. Walking briskly for an hour will burn up to 300 calories.
Smile and be thankful!
Research has shown that people who smile are optimistic have stronger immune systems and live longer. Keep a small “Gratitude” notebook handy for you and baby and make a note of everything your baby does to make you smile and be thankful! It’ll make a wonderful keepsake of the early days of motherhood too.
15-minutes of ‘me-time’ a day
Make a commitment to spend at least 15 minutes a day on yourself without checking your phone or filling your time with an activity. What could you be doing that is simply for you? It’s often the simple things like reading your favourite magazine or eating a piece of chocolate that can make a big difference.
Roll a little of the ‘Joy’ Pulse Point Oil on your wrists and inhale deeply. The combination of bergamot, lime and geranium essential oils have energising and mood-lifting properties.